Pasta always makes for a great meal, but there's more to crafting a complete dish than mixing some spaghetti with some sauce. This simple formula will make your pasta meals something delicious and memorable every time. Photo by miss_yasmina.
In addition to a decent sauce, a perfect pasta dish should have some vegetables and protein too. If you're not sure where to start, Sara Jenkins at Food52 suggests using whatever is in season and going from there:
So the idea is to take what's in season -- peas or corn or brussels sprouts, tomatoes or leeks, even grated pumpkin or fall squash -- and toss it with pasta, adding about 3 to 5 ounces of meat (cured pork, bacon or sausage -- I have even been known to dice salami and use it the same way) per half pound.
Jenkins also suggests you add some herbs that are fitting for your ingredients. Basil, mint and lovage go well with peas and corn. For other vegetables that have stronger, bolder flavours, she suggests using thyme or sage. For the most part, no matter what ingredients you end up with, this formula will keep everything well-balanced and flavorful. People won't even know that you didn't go off of a particular recipe.